Will the Steve Jobs Legacy be Hypocrisy?
Just read a ZDNet article titled "Steve Jobs's dire legacy: Devastating bad taste" that made me wonder which Steve Jobs people will remember the most. Will most think of the genius innovator or will they remember the rich tycoon? Following are a few clips from the article. Read them (or even the whole piece) and let me know what you think.
"We have always been shameless about stealing great ideas" — Steve Jobs, Triumph of the Nerds, 1996
"I'm going to destroy Android, because it's a stolen product. I'm willing to go thermonuclear war on this" — Steve Jobs, Steve Jobs, 2011
What made the Jobs of 2011 so different from the 1996 model? Power. Apple was in trouble in 1996, losing its way in a welter of bad products and worse decisions. Jobs was at NeXT, contemplating the failure of his workstation strategy.
Take a moment and let Jobs's threat sink in. This is a man who once excoriated Microsoft about its lack of taste: for him to use nuclear war as a metaphor is a horrible irony.
Apple, however, is following the diktats of its lost leader. It is using its cash and patents — the nuclear weaponry of large corporations — while, inevitably, claiming that this is the application of natural justice against a great wrong.
The facts of thermonuclear war are stark. The collateral damage to everyone, regardless of their active involvement in the conflict, is tremendous. The long-term consequences are incalculable. It is extraordinarily distasteful to talk of the mobile phone business in such terms.
Android, after all, is guilty at worst of nothing more than the sort of behaviour that Jobs himself once gloried in — back in the days before he had nukes.